Occupied West Bank and East Jerusalem

Imad Bornatt’s 5 Broken Cameras NY screening

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Imad Bornatt, Palestinian film-maker from Bil’in Village, occupied Palestine, presented his multi-award-winning, Oscar-nominated “5 Broken Cameras” at the UN headquarters, Feb 19.  His stunning documentary was met with a standing ovation in the crowded conference room.

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Both Imad’s moving documentary and his answers during Q&A following the screening convey the humanity and great loss of the Palestinians of Bil’in, and of course of all of occupied Palestine.

An utterly moving and powerful documentary, highly recommend that you view it and screen it for anyone who will watch. CONTINUE READING

Observations from Occupied Palestine, part 1

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November, 2013, CO

Over the years since May 2007, I have lived in different areas of occupied Palestine, witnessing the crimes of the Zionist entity and sharing in the daily tragedies, injustices and realities of Palestinians’ lives.

In the occupied West Bank in 2007, I volunteered with the International Solidarity Movement for eight months, during which time I was detained at a protest against a Jewish-only highway in the West Bank, arrested at a road-block removal action, and was finally deported and banned from occupied Palestine.

During those months, I was witness to the ugliest aspects of life under Zionist rule: attacks by illegal Jewish colonists (also armed) and by Zionist soldiers on Palestinian children, women, elderly; humiliating military checkpoints, some with zoo-like turnstiles, all which serve to delay or completely prevent Palestinians’ movement; and raids and weeks-long lock-downs on Palestinian towns and cities, in which the Zionist army ransacks homes and usually abducts one or more member of the family, including children. There are currently 195 Palestinian children in Zionist prisons. CONTINUE READING

on Anthony Bourdain’s Palestine trip

not specific to Gaza, but an excellent article on speaking truth about Palestinians’ humanity and oppression:

Anthony Bourdain, Will You Marry Me?

Posted on September 16, 2013

Something amazing happened on CNN last night. Palestinians were portrayed as human beings.

In his show “Parts Unknown,” Anthony Bourdain travels to exotic and controversial locales to examine the intersection of food, politics, and everyday life. Last night, he visited Jerusalem, the West Bank, and Gaza.

He was immediately mesmerized by Palestine, which is a common phenomenon. It is an amazing place, where the gravity of the history and spirituality is heavy in the air. It feels majestic. But something is a little off. Bourdain felt the splendor, but, as he said, “Then you see the young draftees (teenage Israeli soldiers holding machine guns) in the streets, and you start to get the idea.”

He began his journey with an Israeli chef and author, Yotam. They started by tasting some falafel in Jerusalem’s Old City. Yotam told the audience, in a stunning admission, “Israelis made falafel their own, and everybody in the world thinks falafel is Israeli, but in actual fact, it is as much Palestinian, even more so, because it’s been done for generations here… The question of food appropriation is massive here.”

Now if they could only say the same thing about the land, the houses, and the air, we might be able to get somewhere.

Bourdain then made his way into the West Bank. And on his way to visit a settlement, he said something that Americans never hear on TV:

In 2003, Israel began construction on a wall along the green line representing the Israeli-Palestinian border. The wall now stretches 450 miles. When completed, it will span 700 miles, 85% of it in Palestinian territory… Since 1967, 500,000 Israeli settlers have moved into the West Bank, all in contravention of international law, many in contravention of Israeli law, though in effect it seems to make little difference, they’re here and in ever larger numbers.

Anthony, you will be hearing from certain individuals and organizations in the coming days. They will be upset. They’ve been trying to keep this stuff a secret.

Before he got to the settlement, he noticed some Hebrew graffiti on a Palestinian house in a neighboring village. His driver translated it for him: “Death to Arabs.”  CONTINUE READING

Second Palestinian Political Prisoner to die in 2013 from Zionist Medical Neglect (and Torture?)

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*Arafat Jaradat died in Israeli custody on Saturday (Photo: Palsolidarity)

UPDATE:

Lawyer: Israeli officers tortured Jaradat  (Ma’an News)

Israeli officers tortured Ahmad Jaradat, a 30-year-old who died Saturday in Israeli custody, his lawyer and the Ministry of Detainee Affairs said Sunday.

Kameel Sabbagh, a lawyer at the ministry, said he was present at Jaradat’s last hearing on Thursday. The Israeli judge postponed the hearing for 12 days.

When I entered the courtroom I saw Jaradat sitting on a wooden chair in front of the judge. His back was hunched and he looked sick and fragile.

“When I sat next to him he told me that he had serious pains in his back and other parts of his body because he was being beaten up and hanged for many long hours while he was being investigated

“When Jaradat heard that the judge postponed his hearing he seemed extremely afraid and asked me if he was going to spend the time left in the cell. I replied to him that he was still in the investigation period and this is possible and that as a lawyer I couldn’t do anything about his whereabouts at this time.”

Sabbagh said in a statement that Jaradat’s psychological state was very serious and that he informed the judge his client had been tortured. The judge ordered that Jaradat should be examined by the prison doctor but “this didn’t happen,” the lawyer added.

The Ministry of Detainee Affairs said Israeli interrogators used hanging techniques and sleep deprivation to torture Jaradat in al-Jalameh prison, a day before he died in Megiddo prison.  CONTINUE READING

Take Action: Free Palestinian farmers and agricultural workers targeted for imprisonment

Samidoun:  As they organize to defend their land and Palestinian farming against the onslaught of settlements and siege, Palestinian agricultural workers and organizers have been subject to an intensified arrest campaign in the occupied West Bank of Palestine. Click here to sign our petition at change.org or sign on below to demand an immediate end to the targeting of the Union of Agricultural Work Committees and all Palestinian farmers and agricultural workers, and the freedom of the Palestinian organizers imprisoned for defending their rights. continue reading

Palestinian voice from Susiya, a Palestinian village that existed before the establishment of the State of Israel

Five years ago, I met Nasser Nawaja and his family, and the community of Palestinian Susiya (not to be confused with the illegal Zionist colony of Susiya, in the same south of Hebron, West Bank area, whose colonists regularly viciously attack and aggress  Susiya Palestinians, including elderly, children and women).

When in 2007 I met Nasser, his parents, his wife, brothers and extended family, they had been enduring for years, almost two decades, aggressions by the Israeli army and by Zionist colonists. They had been forcibly moved from their very functional, cool in summer, and innovative cave homes to arid dessert land on which, periodically, the Israeli occupation army would invade and destroy the ramshackle homes these displaced families had constructed. continue reading

Palestinian Land Day and the Global March to Jerusalem in Lebanon: the people

Yesterday, Palestinian Land Day, protests took place in Palestine, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, Egypt and world-wide.

In Palestine, a 20 year old non-violent protestor, Mohmoud Zakot, was assassinated in northern Gaza by an Israeli soldier. In Bethlehem, Maan news reported, in addition to mass injuries, three were critically injured, “one of whom was hit in the face by a tear gas canister.”

At Qalendia Israeli military checkpoint, “249 were treated for injuries and 20 hospitalized,” Maan reported, and “Israeli forces injured nine medics and damaged three ambulances at the protest.”

In Lebanon, demonstrators congregated in the southeast at Beaufort Fortress (Qalet el Shqif), a fortress from the 12th century bombed by Israel and later used by the IOF during their occupation of southern Lebanon. With the ruins of the fortress in the background, Palestine tens km beyond, and the decision not to protest directly at the Lebanese border, the March went on in the nearest feasible point to Palestine and Al Quds. post continues

The Global March to Jerusalem: in solidarity with Palestinians under occupation

*posters for the Global March to Jerusalem, in Shatila camp, Beirut, Lebanon

March 27:

Day one in Beirut, where over one hundred human rights activists from around the world are gathering to join Lebanese and Palestinian activists in the Global March to Jerusalem on March 30, also Palestinian Land Day. Over 20 have come from North America and Europe, and an Asian caravan carries justice activists from 11 countries to join the March.

Local and international organizers have been working on the campaign for months, coming together under an umbrella of non-violent action against Israel’s policy of ethnic cleansing of Jerusalem—a holy city for all—which Israeli leaders have openly declared their intent of forcefully rendering more Jewish. post continues